Brown double-counts Iraq troop withdrawal figures

So, Gordon Brown proudly announces that 1,000 troops are to be withdrawn from Iraq.

The BBC headlines the story “UK troops in Basra cut by 1,000”.

Job done? Well, one small problem. You see, Brown might say “1,000” and the BBC might report “1,000” but you know what? 500 of those troops were already coming home anyway. So it’d more be a matter of “Brown announces withdrawal of 500 troops and then adds in 500 more in the hope that no-one would remember that was already happening anyway”.

As Ming Campbell says:

“Any troop withdrawal from Iraq is welcome, but this is a cynical effort to manipulate the figures.”

Remind me. What happened to all that leaving spin behind stuff?

UPDATE: Oh dear. This turned out to just be a brief and incomplete summary of the full sorry mess which turned 2,000 into zero.

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3 Comments

  • Geoffrey Payne 2nd Oct '07 - 6:56pm

    Of course the reason given is that our troops are “handing over” control to the “Iraqi forces”. Does anyone imagine they are not already infiltrated by insurgents? Does anyone really think that the regions “handed over” are now relatively safe and secure? If they were, the journalists will go there and say so, maybe even Brown could do that. But he won’t because it is too dangerous to go there.
    In truth Iraq today is a no-win situation. Whether are troops stay or leave we are dammed, but we still have to make a choice. What is going on is nothing less than propaganda. The occupying forces in Iraq are defeated and there is nothing anyone can do about it. All the occupying troops should leave. Iraq will turn into chaos, but that is what it is in most regions today anyway.
    In the meantime our troops stay, putting their lives at risk in order to prevent Gordan Brown from looking stupid under the pretence that they are “finishing a job”. A high price to pay for a politician’s vanity.

  • Geoffrey Payne 2nd Oct '07 - 6:58pm

    That should read
    “whether our troops stay or leave …”

    Sorry about that, cannot edit comments.

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